SmartPhone, Part 2

So, last week, I talked about phones and devices and other things mine has replaced.

In summary, phone, alarm clock, pocket calendar, camera.

This week, I take a look at some of my other apps, some of which are more specialized.

Flashlight. This one is a bit odd, as there is no built in flashlight on the phone. It actually uses the camera flash, and simply turns it on constantly, which is really awesome. It can also do flash patterns, including morse code, if I need to use that, because I don’t actually know how to use it. (SOS is built in.)

My phone has replaced my watch, and that’s even without unlocking the phone. I also tend to check the phone about three times some days, before I actually see what time it is. Note: This feature is readily available on non-smart phones, too.

The clock app has also replaced the stopwatch feature, which I usually argued with and sometimes got to work on my watch. Now, it’s really nice, and being able to set timer with Siri is incredibly useful. The clocks also make it really easy to see what time it is else-where in the world. I have gaming friends in other countries, and I can now easily check what time it is for them. I can also change the time quickly (or it changes for me) when I am traveling across time zones.

iPod. I know this one is a bit of a no-brainer, but my phone has replaced my iPod as well, and can store and play all of my music (with better headphones, the play-pause button is very nice.). It also plays podcasts, which aren’t really replacing anything, they’re just awesome. (Writing Excuses all the way!)

The one comic strip that I read, Schlock Mercenary by Howard Tayler, is available as an app that I have, and so I can read them on my phone, and don’t have to rely on my computer. (The bookmarking and whatnot makes it more convenient than my computer, too.)

I can view photos on my phone, and not just photos taken with my camera. I can take other pictures that I like on my computer, and store them on my phone, which can be handy if I want to show something to someone.

I have an app called LogMeIn. It allows me to remote access my computer, which means that, when I’m at school, I can access and do pretty much anything on my computer that I could do if I was physically sitting in front of it. This has been an amazing help, in large part because I can access all of the files stored on my computer, and I can set things up, and do things that only my computer can do, like using mathematica to do some really complicated calculations to check my math homework.

I can check the weather, and be prepared for the day (usually.).

I play games. Lots of games. Puzzle games, adventure games, just plain fun, time-wasting games. SmartPhones really are the new gaming platform, the one that everyone has. And there’s a lot of really good games out there, many of them for free.

In addition to the messenger and facebook messenger apps, I have the regular facebook app (generally only used to accept someone’s friend request immediately. I also have the Skype app. While it hasn’t been incredibly useful on my phone, it is still quite handy to have, as I tutor over Skype, and people know they can get ahold of me there. In a pinch, thanks to the really nice camera on my phone, I could tutor over Skype with just my phone, without too many problems.

Calculator. No, it hasn’t replaced my graphing calculator. I don’t think it ever will, if only for the reason that I’m not allowed to use a phone calculator on a test, for obvious reasons. But they are handy in a pinch, and much more readily available than my regular calculator, which lives in my backpack. I have the default calculator app, a basic graphing calculator, one that takes written input (on the touch screen), and the wolfram alpha app, which is so much more than just a calculator, it’s not even funny. For those who don’t know, check out the wolfram alpha website; the app can do everything that the website can, and it’s nice and easy to use on the phone.

Flash cards. I can enter these on the computer, or even use pre-made decks that other people have created, and study them on my phone. These have saved my life in several classes already.

Spanish. I have a verb conjugator, that can tell me if a verb is regular or irregular, and how exactly it is conjugated. It can also take a conjugated verb and tell me which form it is in, and what that means. I also have the Google Translate app, which I use for other Spanish words. It’s incredibly useful, even if the voice feature is rubbish.

Lastly for today, I have the BlackBoard mobile app. This allows me to check my grades and assignments due, as well as other messages my teachers may have posted. I also do things like stalk the class roster ahead of time, to know exactly who is going to be in my classes. It’s very useful, even though ACC is lame and only allows me to check things on it if I’m on a Wi-Fi connection.

I should be able to sum up the rest of the apps that I use in one more post, to come next week.

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